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Elephant Parts

4.7 out of 5 stars 76 customer reviews

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(Mar 18, 2003)
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Editorial Reviews

Michael Nesmith's groundbreaking Music & Comedy Classic - Winner of The Very First Grammy Award for Video! Join Michael Nesmith for this revolutionary video album of songs, skits and random strangeness that became a direct influence on everything from MTV to SNL. All New Michael Nesmith Commentary. Production Still Gallery

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Robert Ackerman, Roy Babich, Chicago Steve Barkley, Cindy DeVore, Oliver Dear
  • Format: Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    NR
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Anchor Bay
  • DVD Release Date: March 18, 2003
  • Run Time: 62 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (76 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0000844IZ
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #182,380 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Elephant Parts" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
These days a concert clip passes for a "video" of a song, and very few artists take the time and trouble to make a video that is in itself a piece of art, further developing and enrichening the song it is showcasing.
Michael Nesmith stood at the forecastle of the video ship, sailing her into port with the production of this comedy album/collection of video clips, "Elephant Parts." Yes, some of the comedy is a little dated; some of it is just plain silly. But Michael never claimed it was anything more than silly; plus, amidst all the late 70's jokes you'll find the extreme timelessness of his opening monologue, discussing the fact that "there's something funny about the gasoline prices!" rings hysterically true today, as does "The Large Detroit Car Company." The words of his closing song, "Tonite," also speak to a 2000's audience.
Enclosed with these comedy skits are five of Michael Nesmith's video clips, some of the best videos ever made in a time when video was truly its own standalone art form--made by the pioneer of video art. "Light," "Magic," and "Cruisin'" are all from Nesmith's "Infinite Rider on the Big Dogma" album (as is the above-mentioned "Tonite"), with "Cruisin'" being remembered fondly for its quirky lyrics and a young Hulk Hogan in his first major role. "Rio" is from the album "From a Radio Engine to the Photon Wing," and was probably the first major video clip release (although groups from the 60's had been doing it since, well, The Monkees cribbed from The Beatles). "Rio" is funny, it is thoughtful, and it is brilliant.
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Format: DVD
Many years ago when music video was in its infancy, I happened upon Elephant Parts. Michael Nesmith was my least favorite of the Monkees singing group, but after experiencing The Elephant Parts Video I discovered where the real talent was in this group. It is a "must see" program -- fun and nostalgic, yet, still cutting edge for today. Five stars is too low a rating for this knock-out piece!
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I saw Michael Nesmith's ELEPHANT PARTS many years ago on either cable TV or home video. I decided to purchase the DVD and give it a second look.

While the five music videos for Nesmith's songs "Rio," "Cruisin'," "Light," "Magic," and "Tonite" are well done, the comedy bits in between are a mixed bag: some are amusing, others are dated (as old SNL sketches are) and others just aren't funny at all. I don't think the sketch about homemade nuclear bombs would fly in today's post-9/11 world.

Overall, the video is well-done, considering it was made on a shoestring budget (Nesmith had just started his Pacific Arts record label/video company a few years earlier).

The DVD has an interesting commentary track by Nesmith, which was apparently made in the early-to-mid 1990s. There is also a gallery of photo stills, but caution: it does not play on all DVD units (it would not play on my DVD recorder, which kept defaulting to the film itself, but played fine on my portable DVD player).

Overall, 3 1/2 stars.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
okay, so the trail he thought he was blazing - "video records" - didn't exactly displace audio, but Mike Nesmith's grand experiment is still lotsa fun.
it's easily best known for it's handful of archetypal music videos. Nesmith is of course almost as famous for his pioneering efforts with this art-form as he is for The Monkees. the biggest hit to result is easily "Rio," with it's lavish deamscape version of a South American paradise. but i think my favorite is the closing number, "Tonight," with it's wonderfully confessional lyrics: "living inside of a little glass room, living inside of the tube..."
but the music is maybe a third of the story. allying himself with (most significantly) songwriter Bill Martin ("Saturday Night") and Hollywood director-to-be William Dear (Harry & The Hendersons), Nesmith spins a delightfully nutty "stream of consciousness" in the vein of Monty Python's Flying Circus. as i've already stated in another review, one of the things i love about The Monkees tv series was a decided Pythonesque sensibility. my one (semi)regret about Elephant Parts is that Mike didn't invite Micky Dolenz or Peter Tork to join in the fun.
the "fun" in question includes...
"The Pirate Alphabet": I as in what one is left with when one wears an eyepatch, O as in the sound you make when you get stabbed, that sort of thing.
the satrical gameshow "Name That Drug."
"Super Marine," in which the case for joining is stated by, let's just say, not the person they had in mind.
"Who Wants To Know?," a talkshow on which a battered wife gives advise to fellow battered wives: "keep it simple, salt, pepper, butter, sage..."
"Vegetarian Safari," in which a non-carnivore finds a novel way to stalk his own prey.
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Format: VHS Tape Verified Purchase
I just recieved the DVD of "Elephant Parts" & have just finished watching it, I haven't laughed soooo much in years!!. I used to own the VHS version a long time ago & watching my new copy tonight, it reminded me how funny it was. Mike Nesmith is trully a genius when it comes to not only producing music, but video as well & it's a big pitty that he didn't go further with his "back-to-back" video concept (MTV format) that he sold to a large television company, it could have been so much more interesting!!. I do have ONE slightly small complaint, I found the video quality it's self, to be poor. I remember seeing the video version I had having a much clearer picture, has the video deteriorated over the years, or was it sourced from an inferior master tape?. Apart from that I loved watching it again for the first time in years & hope that his follow-up T.V. series "Televison Parts" will also be released on DVD in the near future!
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